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Why Mosquitoes Buzz in People's Ears by…

Why Mosquitoes Buzz in People's Ears (original 1975; edition 1980)

by Verna Aardema

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2,077None3,173 (4.07)7
Title:Why Mosquitoes Buzz in People's Ears
Authors:Verna Aardema
Info:Scholastic (1980), Paperback
Collections:Your library
Tags:ETEC 525

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Why Mosquitos Buzz in People's Ears by Verna Aardema (1975)


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Showing 1-5 of 132 (next | show all)
I really enjoyed this book that explains a natural phenomena with a fictional from West Africa. One mosquito’s ridiculous story causes complete chaos in the jungle, so the mosquito keeps asking people if the animals are still mad at him. The story includes African animals and the illustrations incorporate an African style of art. There are also several onomatopoeias (wasawusu, badamin, kili wili) that are taken from African languages. These details add to the reader’s understanding of African culture and beliefs. I think this book is a great tool for introducing Africa to students with a fun tale that relates to something they are familiar with. ( )
  EmilySadler | Mar 26, 2014 |
This book is about an African folktale that explains why mosquitoes buzz in peoples ears. The books begins starts with a mosquito telling an iguana a story. The iguana thinks this is a lie and does not want to hear anything more the mosquito has to say. This affected all the animals and creatures in the animal kingdom. This chain of events causes a death of a baby owl. The death causes the mother owl to become bitter, therefore she does not call to wake up the sun. The King Lion discovers who is responsible for all this and orders that the mosquito be punished. Now the mosquito buzzes in ears to get rid of his guilt.

Personal Reaction:
This was an awesome book to show children that lying can affect everyone around you.

Classroom Extension Ideas:
Discuss what a consequence is and call on some children to share experiences they might have had with this. Another idea would be to draw a scene from the book.
  juliana63012 | Mar 25, 2014 |
This wonderful folk tale tells a tale about why Mosquito buzzes in peoples ear. It starts with Mosquito telling a lie in iguana's ear which triggers a series of event that eventually kill a baby owlet. The mother owl is so saddened by this that she wont call the sun to rise, which in turn affects the rest of the jungle... The king of the jungle, the lion, then has to find out why the baby owlet had died, which traces all the way back to mosquito telling lies in iguana's ear. This book teaches kids the concept of cause and effect and how one little event could trigger a bigger event. It's a very interactive book that some kids could put to memory and recite it when read aloud. The illustrations are stunning and accurately portray the african culture in that area. I highly recommend this book! ( )
  Keller_M | Mar 13, 2014 |
This is a tale about the domino effect of our actions. Mosquito tells Iguana a lie, causing Iguana to plug his ears. Thus she ignores snake, which terrifies him. On down the line, the effect of mosquito’s lie ripples until a baby owl is accidentally killed and mother owl is too sad to wake the sun that day. King Lion traces the mischief, one animal at a time, back to mosquito. Mosquito feels so bad, she goes around whining in people’s ears all day.
  davetomscholten | Feb 16, 2014 |
Porquoi tale of West African legend.
  bp0128bd | Jan 24, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 132 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (7 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Verna Aardemaprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Dillon, DianeIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Dillon, LeoIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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For Marcia VanDuinen who heard this story first
First words
One morning a mosquito saw an iguana drinking at a waterhole.
Is everyone still mad at me?
Mosquito told me such a big lie, I couldn't bear to listen to it. So I put sticks in my ears.
I'd rather be deaf than listen to such nonsense!
It was the mosquito's fault
The mosquito said, "I saw a farmer digging yams that were almost as big as I am."
"What's a mosquito compared to a yam?" snapped the iguana grumpily.
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Book description
This West African pourquoi tale explains why mosquitoes buzz in people's ears. It all starts with Mosquito telling a lie to Iguana. Tired of listening to Mosquito, Iguana puts twigs in his own ears. When Python tries to talk to Iguana and Iguana doesn't respond to him, it sets off a chain of events that leads to the sun not rising in the morning. King Lion must learn the story of the events leading back to Mosquito's lie in order to get Mother Owl to call the sun. The story is enhanced by beautiful Caldecott winning illustrations.

If you enjoyed this story, try "Ahanti to Zulu: African Traditions".
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Reveals the meaning of the mosquito's buzz.

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